Conclusion

Fundamental Changes Affect Copper's Role

Demand for twisted-pair copper cables in outside-plant telecom networks is being affected by two fundamental shifts.  One is the spread of mobile cellular technology, which increasingly is being used as an alternative to wireline telecom rather than as an adjunct.  The other dramatic shift is the spread of broadband Internet, with new services challenging the ability of copper wires to provide very high transmission speeds.  The dominant technology for provision of broadband services at present is DSL over copper pair cables, but FTTx has been increasing in importance and the trend towards all-fibre FTTH networks is growing.